Managed service providers (MSP) are vitally important for small businesses that lack an in-house team, so choosing the right MSP can be a make or break decision. Whether you need an entire managed team or a co-managed option to provide additional personnel, use these recommendations to make a sound decision. 

Common MSP Mistakes

You’ve been working with your MSP for a while now, but are they bringing you the best value? That all depends on a careful assessment of your business needs and the capabilities of your current provider. You likely hired your current MSP at a point where your business looked very different from the present reality and they may no longer efficiently meet your needs.

A mistake that is often made during the hiring process is to choose based on price. Sometimes the cheapest option is okay to pick, such as with food or physical goods. For an integral service like the management of your IT needs though, quality and reliability only increase with the cost. It may be time to consider upgrading your package or looking for a new company if the hiring of your current MSP was a matter of the lowest cost to get what you needed. If you have been having more IT problems since hiring your MSP, this is a good reason to make a change and invest in a better company.

Another mistake businesses often make when choosing their MSP is the buffet selection of services that can leave major gaps in coverage. A good provider should offer consultation of what IT services your business needs to run at full capacity, and provide appropriate solutions. If the company you are working with only provides network and hardware support, but no business continuity services, you run the risk of finding yourself hiring another company just to get you back up and running after a disaster. 

Choosing an MSP

So what should you look for when choosing an MSP? Consider these tips to choose the right provider for your business.

They Focus On Custom Solutions

Every business is different, even within the same industry and a great managed service provider understands this. After careful examination of your business and its needs, a full-bodied plan should be presented. A red flag is the recommendation of a package based on your company size instead of a suggestion made based on careful analysis. The provider should be able to handle technology, account management, and disaster planning to ensure that contracting out for your IT services doesn’t mean more work for you. 

They Are Experts In Their Tech

In a world of ever-changing technology, being at the forefront of changes can be tempting, but incorporating technology you aren’t familiar with can slow you down. Look for an MSP that focuses on providing expertise in a few high-value technologies instead of a jack-of-all-trades company that seeks to use the latest trends and do everything themselves. A good MSP has a network of partners who specialize in other competencies they can rely upon so you still receive outstanding service. A diversion of efforts and unfamiliarity with tech won’t bring as much value as working with a company that can reliably deliver and leverage partnerships. Ask about the years of experience in the core service areas and their business connections to ensure you’ll have reliable service when you need it.

They Help You Plan For The Future

This is an often overlooked aspect of choosing a provider because the search often focuses on present needs, but the future is a very important consideration. As your business expands, technological solutions need to expand along with it. An agility and business process assessment is a chance for the company to help anticipate your future growth and plan for it. Additionally, a business continuity plan is essential to help you quickly recover in the event of a disaster. Search for an MSP that provides these services, providing additional peace of mind that even in the worst-case scenario they have your back.

Keeping these tips in mind can help you make the right choice as you choose a managed service provider. Explore how a company like PGH Networks can help your business succeed by covering your IT needs.